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Paving the way for ecumenical studies, learning English in Bossey

Each year students from all over the world arrive at Bossey near Geneva for a three-month language training course to pave their way for ecumenical studies that follow on straight after. “The title captures the goal of the course,” says Father Lawrence Iwuamadi, the Nigerian priest who studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and is academic dean of the Ecumenical Institute.

Arab religious leaders create first-ever platform for social cohesion

An “Interreligious Dialogue for Peace, Promoting Peaceful Coexistence & Common Citizenship” in Vienna on 26 February is creating a first-ever joint action plan for Arab religious leaders to lead the way in repairing the divisions created by extremists, and rebuilding social cohesion and common citizenship in the Arab region.

Turning plans into action to prevent incitement to violence

Another step towards preventing incitement to violence that could lead to atrocity crimes was taken on Tuesday this week, when religious leaders and other actors gathered for a three-day meeting in Vienna to discuss the implementation of the Plan of Action for such prevention.

Religious leaders of many faiths talk peace in Assisi

Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Christian and Buddhist religious leaders met this week in Assisi to discuss peace, while across the ocean in New York City global political leaders assembled at the United Nations also focussed on a troubled world.

WCC/UN conference calls for coordinated action on refugee crisis

Following the WCC/UN High Level Conference on the Refugee Crisis in Europe, which took place at the Ecumenical Centre Geneva on 18-19 January, a statement has been issued entitled "Europe’s Response to the Refuge Crisis, From Origin to Transit, Reception and Refuge, A Call for Shared Responsibility and Coordinated Action”.

WCC urges responsibility for and support to the refugees in Europe

In the wake of recent crisis with the refugees in Europe, it is “absolutely and critically necessary that all European states take their proper responsibility in terms of reception and support for people seeking refuge, safety and a better future for themselves and their families. This cannot be left only to the states where they enter first,” says the WCC general secretary.

Momentum builds for ban on nuclear weapons

After a concerted examination of the evidence presented at the Vienna Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons and two earlier conferences, 44 of the states present called for a ban on nuclear weapons. The host government Austria added momentum with a specific, cooperative pledge to “fill the legal gap for the prohibition of nuclear weapons” and eliminate them.

WCC general secretary shares with pope aspirations for unity, justice and peace

In an audience with Pope Francis in the Vatican, the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit stressed the significance of Christian unity. He also expressed appreciation for Pope Francis’s call to pray for peace in Syria and his call for churches to remember the poor, encouraging Christians to work for economic justice.